BY SPNW Staff 12:00PM 11/20/2011

Huskies hoopsters crushed in first road game

Washington started slow and became worse in their first game away from home, as Saint Louis went up by 25 at the half crushed the Huskies, 77-64 Sunday morning.

Washington's Terrence Ross, with 17 points and 10 rebounds, was the only Husky with a good game during a crushing road loss to the St. Louis Billikens. / Drew McKenzie, Sportspress Northwest file

If their Sunday morning non-conference game was supposed to be a tune-up, the Washington Huskies basketball team was temporarily tone-deaf.

In charge from the start, the Saint Louis Billikens of the Atlantic-10 Conference hit their first seven field goals and went on to crush the visiting Huskies, 77-64. Leading 50-25 at the half and by 29 later on, the Billikens eased up and allowed the Huskies to close the gap a bit.

The Huskies (3-1) followed up three relatively easy home wins by being walloped in their first road game of the season. A slow start was not entirely unexpected — the Huskies have never won a non-conference game away from home under Lorenzo Romar, falling to 0-9. Saint Louis was coming off a 10-19 season, but returned nine players under veteran coach Rick Majerus and put a defensive whipping on the intimidated Huskies.

Terrence Ross led the Huskies with 17 points and 10 rebounds, but beyond him, little was to recommend. Leading scorer C.J. Wilcox was held to four points, point guard Abdul Gaddy had  two points, and Tony Wroten was scoreless in the first half before finishing with 14 points.

Early foul trouble for frontliners Darnell Gant and Aziz N’Diaye plus 10 first half turnovers doomed the Huskies. The Billikens’ Brian Conklin dominated inside with 25 points.

“They were waiting for us — you could see that,” said Romar of the Billkens, a team he coached from 1999-2002 before taking the job at UW. “We started casting up shots at eight and 10 seconds (into possessions) and you can’t do that against a good defensive team.

“We didn’t move like we should have and didn’t execute defensively.”

Romar was, however, pleased that his players adjusted after halftime.

“We did a much better job in the second half,” he said. “We learned.”

He praised Wroten’s ability to recover with a strong second half.

“He’s had his way with defenses in entire life,” Romar said. “But at this level they load up on you. He made a good adjustment. It gave me confidence that in our next road game, we’ll handle it better.”

With seven freshmen, learning will be a long-term experience for Washington.


YourThoughts

  • idisstew77

    Say, this tastes suspiciously like humble pie.  Probably good therapy for the young Dawgs.  Too much swagger isn’t a good thing when you’re cutting your baby teeth.  I also have the bad feeling that Gant and N’Diaye are going to have to fight foul trouble against formidable competition.  Regardless if it’s by design or happenstance, Romar teams seldom have quality depth at the four and five position.  It’s okay, the Huskies are climbing a steep learning curve.  I’ll expect much more after the first of the year.

  • idisstew77

    Say, this tastes suspiciously like humble pie.  Probably good therapy for the young Dawgs.  Too much swagger isn’t a good thing when you’re cutting your baby teeth.  I also have the bad feeling that Gant and N’Diaye are going to have to fight foul trouble against formidable competition.  Regardless if it’s by design or happenstance, Romar teams seldom have quality depth at the four and five position.  It’s okay, the Huskies are climbing a steep learning curve.  I’ll expect much more after the first of the year.

  • dinglenuts

    This will be another typical year for the Huskies under Romar.  Their lack of discipline and focus will lead to their now-yearly tradition of underachievement.

  • dinglenuts

    This will be another typical year for the Huskies under Romar.  Their lack of discipline and focus will lead to their now-yearly tradition of underachievement.